Illegal downloads are bleeding the music industry, causing $12.5 million of economic loss every year.

But at the Big Sound Music Summit, panelists are putting a positive focus on the convergence of music with the internet.

Amy Schostakowski reports.

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Critics say the music industry is dieing with one clear issue affecting its profitability.

Graham Ashton, BIGSOUND Executive Programmer: “Definitely none more significant than the advent of the internet and how that has, you know, affected the way people get their music, obviously less people are paying for it now than ever before.”

But at the BIGSOUND Music Industry Summit, panellists are focusing on the future of music, drawing inspiration from the past.

Keynote Speaker, Michael Azerrad, notes that bands today are facing much the same problems that Indie underground band Nirvana faced in the late 80’s.

Cary Caldwell, Festival Producer: “There’s so many bands out there and there’s so many people trying to do well in the industry that it’s going to be hard for everyone.”

Despite problems the music industry faces, conferences like this highlight why today could be the best time in music history to be an artist.

Graham Ashton, BIGSOUND Executive Programmer: “I think it’s easier if you’re good to record your music in a really cost-effective way. And it’s easier to spread your music around the globe.”

Members of the music industry are recognising a constructive side of file sharing, with massive spikes in the interest of live music.

Anna Bligh< Qld Premier: "We've got some great bands emerging out of Queensland and we want to see the tradition of people like Ed Cooper, the Go-Betweens and Powderfinger, continue into the future." BIGSOUND runs until Friday, hosting 60 world class bands over two nights. Amy Schostakowski, QUT News.